Thursday, May 19, 2011

Warrantless entry?

A recent Supreme Court decision justified warrantless entry by police officers into a person's home if illegal drug activity is merely suspected.  This was an 8-1 decision.

Interestingly enough, the case that was heard came out of Lexington, Ky. According to USA Today, this is what happened:

Officers had entered the breezeway looking for a man who sold crack cocaine to an undercover informant and then fled. Police heard a door slam, but did not know which of two units the suspected dealer had entered. A marijuana odor was coming from one of the doors.
They knocked on that door, announced they were the police, and, hearing noises, broke down the door. They found Hollis King, defendant in Monday's case, and two other people inside with marijuana and cocaine. (The dealer police had chased was in another apartment.)
This is troubling. Granted, the defendant was involved in illegal activity, but does this justify disregard for the 4th Amendment?

Should police officers be allowed to enter someone's private property without a warrant? Does this set a dangerous precedent?


Sally_Oh said...

To me, this is the scariest thing that has happened to date.

“The germ of dissolution of our federal government is in the constitution of the federal Judiciary; an irresponsible body (for impeachment is scarcely a scare-crow) working like gravity by night and by day, gaining a little today and a little tomorrow, and advancing its noiseless step like a thief, over the field of jurisdiction, until all shall be usurped.” Thomas Jefferson in a letter to Charles Hammond, August 18, 1821

Logan said...

@Sally_Oh -

Agreed. It is scary. The 8-1 decision is mind blowing.

Hempy said...

The Robert's Court is intent on dismantling the Constitution. It's anti-feudalist provisions are anathema to the Robert's Court.

Conservatives used to decry a more liberal Court alleging that it was making law. The charges were baseless. However, the Robert's Court has gone to extremes in rewriting the Constitution.

The Robert's Court is seeking to impose feudalist values on the Constitution.

Even though marijuana was mentioned, the Robert's Court doesn't want to recognize that Article I, Sec 8, Clause 8 promotes the progress of science and useful arts.

Cannabinoids of the hemp plant have been demonstrated to cure cancer. Yet the progress of this kind of science and useful arts is what the Robert's Court wants nothing to do with.